Originally Posted by Funkym0nkey
Also the accuracy estimate is just that. It gives you possible error.
Yes, but this margin of error is a very imortant piece of data (for any kind of measurement, really), that's vitally important for the further processing of the location data. As long as the accuracy data is correct any algorithms can safely assume you really are inside a certain radius. If it isn't the location data is basically worthless. (The "but it's spot on anyway" argument only works if you already know exactly where you are, but then the GPS is sort of a moot point.)
Naturally it's better to err on the side of caution and assume slightly worse than calculated accuracy, but on the other hand a 20 m radius is pretty much worthless for a lot of applications.
That's exactly why proper tests should be done - before you test each phone vs a reference GPS and a few landmarks with known high precision coordinates you can't even tell if the accuracy reading the phone's GPS gives is accurate in itself. It's entirely possible that LG and HTC fudge their numbers just to look good, while Samsung is a bit over-cautious, but we don't know
that and I like to know things.